The most important part of revenue section of your profit and loss report is total sales. Secondary revenue and other income can be unpredictable, so to grow your business you should focus on your primary sales revenue. Operating revenues and operating expenses refer to the core business of the company and this is the most important metrics as it represents the core that is sustainable. How much sales have risen or fallen since your previous profit and loss report and the breakeven level of sales are a lot more important from the core business point of view.

Operating profits matter more than non-operating profits as they can be harder to bring down. On the other hand, one can give too much credence to the non-operating flows either inflows or outflows. For example profits or losses on investments or sale of assets are not part of the regular business. Such items should be excluded from your definition of sustainable revenues. Let us now turn to the core profit flows of the business.